“You are what you eat.”
Healthy and nutritious diet not only provides the energy to carry out everyday tasks, but also significantly improves moods, memory, mental capacity and learning skills. Children specially need all the help they can get to grow physically, mentally, emotionally and intellectually. The importance of healthy foods for brain and intellectual development cannot be emphasized enough.
Some of the best foods for children’s brain development may not be obvious at first. Children have very specific nutritional needs to grow well. Childhood is also the time when healthy eating habits are developed. Parents need to ensure that they encourage eating of balanced and nutritious meals.
Here’s outlining 10 best foods to boost cognition in children.
- Iron fortified cereals are good for children. Iron ensures optimal development of cognitive functions to enhance learning, memory and attention.
- Oatmeal is an excellent source of energy for the brain and body. It’s low glycemic index releases energy slowly and over a longer period of time to last well into the day. It is a source of fiber, Vitamin E, Vitamins B, zinc and potassium.
- Dark leafy greens are another great source of iron. They are best eaten with foods rich in vitamin C like tomatoes, orange juice, strawberries etc for maximum iron absorption.
- Salmon is rich in omega 3 fatty acids such as DHA and EPA that are essential ingredients for brain growth.
- Beans have protein, complex carbs, fiber, and loads of vitamins and minerals. All these help to keep energy level up, which in turn allows children to focus, think and retain what they have learnt. Omega-3, which is vital for brain growth is found in kidney beans and pinto beans.
- Eggs contain plenty of protein. Egg yolk has choline, which is known to aid memory development.
- Peanut Butter has Vitamin E. It provides antioxidant properties for protecting and restoring nervous system. It also has thiamine to help the brain cells and nervous system grow and function properly.
- Whole grain cereals provide glucose to the brain and body. Whole grain has greater levels of fibre, which helps to regulate the release of glucose.
- Berries have high levels of antioxidants and Vitamin C. One of its many benefits is improved memory. Berry seeds are known to contain Omega-3 for aiding brain development.
- Milk and yogurt are rich in protein and vitamins B, which help in maximizing brain tissue growth and providing the necessary enzymes. It also contains Vitamin D for the development of neuromuscular system and well being of human cells.
So go ahead to give our children plenty of nutritious food, which not only help in overall development, but also boost cognition and brain development.
About the Author
Swati Joshi is the Founder and CEO of Influenshine, a digital marketing firm that specializes
in Content Strategy, Content Creation and Social Media marketing. Follow her on LinkedIn,
or on Twitter (@IamSwatiJoshi).